[22-year-old George III came to the throne with the usual excitement that ought to betoken the birth of a new era; alas, while it was long, his reign would bring the loss of the American colonies and is best remembered today for His Majesty's eventual descent into madness.]
1147 - The Seljuk Turks under Mesud I of the Sultanate of Rum completely annihilated the German crusaders of Conrad III at the Battle of Dorylaeum; from a force of some 20,000 Conrad III was only able to add 2,000 to a force commanded by France's Louis VII before attempting (and failing) to lay siege to Damascus in July 1148 as part of the Second Crusade.
1315 - Adam Banastre, Henry de Lea, and William Bradshaw led a putative attack on Liverpool Castle.
1415 - England's Henry V defeated the army of France's Charles VI commanded by Charles d'Albret and various Armagnac nobles at the Battle of Agincourt; the battle is one of the most celebrated in English history, and forms the core of William Shakespeare's play Henry V.
1616 - Dutch sea-captain Dirk Hartog made the second recorded landfall by a European on Australian soil, at the later-named Dirk Hartog Island off the coast of Western Australia.
1747 - The British fleet under Admiral Sir Edward Hawke defeated a French force commanded by Admiral Desherbiers de l'Etenduère at the second battle of Cape Finisterre.
1760 - George III ascended to the throne of England following the death of his grandfather, George II - his father Frederick, Prince of Wales, having died in March 1751.
1813 - Canadian forces (aided by Mohawks) defeated a much larger American army commanded by Major-General Wade Hampton at the Battle of Chateauguay, near Ormstown, Quebec, during the War of 1812.
1828 - London's St Katharine Docks opened; it would be the engineer Thomas Telford's only major project in the capital. Named for the former hospital of St Katharine's by the Tower and formerly an integral part of the Port of London, they are currently enjoying a second life after being converted into a popular housing and entertainment district known as Docklands.
1854 - The disastrous Charge of the Light Brigade - at the Battle of Balaklava - occurred during the Crimean War, under the command of Britain's Lord Cardigan.
1861 - The Toronto Stock Exchange was created.
1875 - The first performance of the Piano Concerto No. 1 by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky was given in Boston, with Hans von Bülow as soloist.
1912 - Richard Strauss' opera Ariadne auf Naxos received its world debut performance at the Vienna State Opera.
1924 - The forged Zinoviev Letter was published by London's Daily Mail, wrecking any chance Ramsay MacDonald's Labour Party might have had of re-election.
1944 - Heinrich Himmler ordered a crackdown on the Edelweiss Pirates, a loosely knit offshoot of the German Youth Movement in Nazi Germany which had been assisting those in hiding from the Hitler Youth, the Reich Labour Service, and/or compulsory military service; in all 13 members of the Ehrenfelder Gruppe were publicly hanged in Köln the following November 10th, including Bartholomäus Schink.
1976 - Her Majesty The Queen officially opened Britain's National Theatre on London's South Bank.
1983 - During Operation Urgent Fury the United States and its Caribbean allies invaded Grenada, six days after Prime Minister Maurice Bishop and several of his supporters were executed in a coup d'état.
1993 - Jean Chrétien was elected Prime Minister of Canada, winning a massive plurality for the Liberal Party, and reducing the former governing Progressive Conservative Party to 2 seats. Good times...
1995 - A commuter train collided with a school bus in Fox River Grove, Illinois, killing seven students.
2007 - The first Airbus A380 passenger flight - operating for Singapore Airlines, with flight number SQ 380 - flew its scheduled service between Singapore and Sydney.
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